Categorized |Beef, Chicken, Fish, Pork

How to make the green seasoning paste that’s so unique to Caribbean cuisine.

The one key ingredient when it comes to cooking any meat or fish dish in the Caribbean, is the green seasoning mix that’s used in the marinating process. Before we go on I’d like to mention a couple things. This recipe usually calls for 2 key ingredients “shado beni” and “Spanish thyme” (aka podina), both of which I can’t get readily get here in Canada, unless I source out a Thai or Caribbean specialty store. For the “shado beni” I’ve substituted in cilantro, which is somewhat similar but less pungent and I’ve left out the Spanish thyme. If you’re based in the Caribbean or can get those 2 ingredients, please use with caution since they can easily overpower the green seasoning with it’s strong flavors. I also couldn’t get the pimento peppers, so I opted for 1 banana pepper, but you can also use a Cubanelle

There are several variations of this seasoning mix, but this is one that I’ve tested and perfected over the years.

You’ll need…

1 bundle of Cilantro (about 1-2 cups)
1 stalk of celery (include leaves if you have it)
1 head or garlic (about 11 cloves)
4 green onions (scallions)
1 bunch of fresh thyme (about 3/4 cup)
1/4 cup of water
pinch of salt (optional)
2-3 shallots (optional)
2 pimento peppers (1 banana pepper or 1 Cubanelle)

*Food processor or blender.

Peel, trim and wash the ingredients and let drain.


Then rough-cut into smaller pieces so it’s easier to manage and work in the blender or food processor.



Add all the ingredients into your food processor or as in my case,  a blender (I’m sure my wife is mad at me for showing you our prehistoric blender)… including the water. You may be required to move around or push down the ingredients occasionally so it all gets worked by the blades.


Personally I like to liquify my blend to the consistency of pesto or even a bit more liquid. However you have the choice at this point to make a bit more chunky-like if you wish.


After a few pulse actions you’ll find that everything blends together quite easily. Here’s a picture of the finished green seasoning :


Storage Tips!

From this batch I have a plastic container that I pour half into and keep in the fridge for everyday use, the other half I pour into a freezer zip lock bag and freeze until I get through the batch in the fridge. Since you probably won’t be using the seasoning as much as I do, I suggest you divide it into 3-4 portions, keeping 1 in the fridge (can last for 2-3 months) and freeze the rest.

You can also get a couple ice cube trays from the dollar store and fill each ice cube area 1/4 up with the seasoning mix and then freeze. Then when it’s frozen, you can dump the cubes into a freezer bag and place back in the freezer. Now whenever you’re cooking, all you have to do is grab a cube and use.

You’ll notice that after time the once brilliant green color will go darker, don;t be alarmed. That’s natural!

Happy cooking

Be sure to leave me your comments or suggestions.

Forgot to mention… this makes about 3 cups of green seasoning.

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284 Responses to “How to make the green seasoning paste that’s so unique to Caribbean cuisine.”

  1. Mary says:

    Thanks so much for this… Very helpful indeed

  2. Yeseree says:

    do u use as a marinade in addition to your seasoning? Like if I were making curry or jerk chicken, do I rinse the marinade off or add the curry/jerk seasoning to it? Thx!

    • admin says:

      for jerk, use strictly a jerk marinade (there’s a recipe here) for curry/stew use the green seasoning. Marinade, then proceed with the process you use for making such. Take a look at some of the curry dishes (meats and vegetarian) on here and you’ll get an idea of what I mean.

  3. Eclyn Harper says:

    thanks for yourgreen rescipe you can also use apple cider vinegar instead of water and add abit of salt this can stay in the fridge for about 3mths

  4. Sandra Richardson says:

    You could use white vinegar as the liquid and bring to a rolling boil for five minutes, cool and bottle in glass bottles and this seasoning will be able to stand in a cupboard for one to two months.

  5. Holly says:

    I am so happy to see your post. Yeats ago some sweet frientds from Trinidad taught me about green seasoning. Yours is very simiilar. I searched on green seasoniong today because I was thinking about them. What a treat to see your article.

  6. Pattrasha Charles says:

    Hi thank you for the tip on seasoning, also can you help me with cooking for diabetics?


  7. Diana says:

    Thank you for the recepie.
    I just made this for my curry goat. I hope Caribbeans won’t be offended by the modifications I made, I used sweet pepper as I cannot have anything spicy.
    Still smells and tastes great to me.

  8. Janet says:

    Happy Easter Monday
    Your menu’s are great
    this service is a very
    necessary subject for
    schools home economics class
    for both boys and girls
    A Caribbean Cookbook for
    the next generation would be
    a big help.
    Well done Chris

  9. Wendy says:

    For green seasoning, I find fresh ginger, brown sugar, and rum enhances the flavour of the meat. Thanks Chris

  10. Tammie says:

    Hello Chris. Thanks for sharing your passion and your recipes. Today is my honey’s birthday, last night I made the green seasoning that used for stewed pork, man, it was smelling nice up in the kitchen. I seasoned the pork up last night and will cook the pork up for the special bday dinner tonight. I can’t wait to serve this thing up. Many blessings.

  11. petal says:

    I usually blend ginger in my seasoning paste, it gives the paste additional spiceiness

  12. Monique says:

    One stalk of celery or one stem, im confused

    • admin says:

      can be confusing. In North America you get stalks, however in the Caribbean (Markets) it’s more about the thin stems and abundance leafy part.

  13. Kris says:

    We just love your recipes, the pork chow is on the menu tonight! Great site and thanks for all your help

  14. angela says:

    I use vinegar to grind the seasoning and it stays out of the refrigerator.

  15. Sandy says:

    Hi Chris,

    Is the banana pepper hot?
    Love your recipes.



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